Early mobilisation and rehabilitation of paediatric intensive care patients: Clinical practice guide

Published October 2022

This guide provides a framework to support clinicians in the safe use of early mobilisation activities for paediatric intensive care unit patients.

Early mobilisation and rehabilitation of paediatric intensive care patients: Clinical practice guide PDF Document - 685KB

Early mobilisation and rehabilitation of paediatric intensive care unit patients can prevent complications, delays in mobility and extended hospital stays. It requires a multidisciplinary, collaborative approach.

The guide uses an animal system to classify a safe level of movement for all children in the paediatric intensive care unit. Movement then gradually increases as the patient recovers.

At a glance

Lizard – Limited activity, contraindications present. Repositioning, pressure area care and splints only.

Wombat – Medium acuity patient, moderate level activities. Mobility within the bedspace.

Koala – High acuity patient, low level activities. Activities within the bed only.

Kangaroo – Low acuity patient, higher level activities. Mobility around the unit and outside the unit with medical approval.

Background

This clinical practice guide and related resources were developed, with permission, based on the experience and lessons learned by the Queensland Children’s Hospital PICU.

Disclaimer

The information on this page is general in nature and cannot reflect individual patient variation. It reflects Australian intensive care practice, which may differ from that in other countries. It is intended as a supplement to the more specific information provided by the doctors and nurses caring for your loved one. ICNSW attests to the accuracy of the information contained here but takes no responsibility for how it may apply to an individual patient. Please refer to the full disclaimer.